CRIPPLE CREEK, Colo. — Multiple clients who used the suspect in the murder of Kelsey Berreth as a farrier claim that he told them he didn’t know she was pregnant with their child — something that runs counter to claims made by her mother and other previous testimony.
Patrick Frazee is charged with first-degree murder, solicitation to commit first-degree murder, and tampering with a deceased human corpse for Berreth’s disappearance and presumed death. The 29-year-old mother and flight instructor has not been seen alive since Nov. 22, 2018 — Thanksgiving Day.
His trial began on Nov. 1 and is slated to last for three weeks, though both the prosecution and defense told the judge it is running “significantly” ahead of schedule. Fourteen witnesses took the stand on Tuesday.
Three of them — all women — testified about using Frazee as a farrier. Two of them said that they had used Frazee for years, and they didn’t know he was a father until he showed up to an appointment with an infant daughter in tow.
They testified that Frazee told them the child’s mother had called him out of the blue in October and told him she was about to give birth. According to their testimony, Frazee said Berreth was not an involved mother and he was seeking full custody of the child.
Cheryl Berreth, Kelsey Berreth’s mother, testified the exact opposite, saying that Frazee did know about the pregnancy and that Kelsey was a devoted mother.
“Kaylee is … was … Kelsey’s life,” Cheryl Berreth said. “Her world revolved around Kaylee. She was a great mom.”
During opening statements, prosecutors alleged that Frazee "poisoned" everyone around him with lies about Berreth.
Lori Luce, who was Frazee’s client for six years, recalled an odd conversation she had with him following Berreth’s disappearance.
“I said ‘well, Patrick, maybe she’ll come back,” Luce said. “And he said ‘oh, she’s never coming back.”
Another woman who knew Frazee from his farrier services said he had discussed the vastness of Teller County, and how easy it would be to hide a body there. That conversation was in 2015.
Around Berreth’s disappearance, Frazee was exchanging texts with another woman, telling her that “life had taken some awkward turns” around the time she disappeared.
Following a morning filled with testimony from law enforcement, only one expert witness took the stand Tuesday afternoon. That was Jerry Means, a former arson investigator who worked at the Colorado Bureau of Intelligence.
Means’ testimony was difficult to hear, especially in a courtroom filled with members of the Berreth and Frazee families. He testified that a charred section of Frazee’s property had evidence that both a black plastic tote and potentially a human body had been burned there.
Krystal Lee, who had a long and complicated relationship with Frazee, claims that he burned a black tote box containing Berreth’s body outside the Florissant home he shared with his mother.
Lee, who 9NEWS has previously referred to as Krystal Lee Kenney, said that Frazee killed Berreth on Nov. 22, 2018 and stored her body in a barn on a property that he leased. Lee said Frazee had asked her to kill Berreth three times earlier in the fall, but she couldn’t go through with it. When Frazee told her she had a “mess to clean up,” Lee said she drove to Colorado from Idaho. She said she then cleaned up a bloody scene at Berreth’s condo.
Lee has pleaded guilty to tampering with physical evidence for disposing of Berreth’s cellphone. She testified at the trial as part of an agreement with prosecutors.
Testimony is slated to begin on Wednesday morning. 9NEWS is in the courtroom and will have updates throughout the day on 9NEWS and 9NEWS.com.
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